10 Statements That Will Change Your Marriage, (by Sue Schlesman)
Remember the old rhyme, “stick and stones may break my bones, but words will never harm me”? In any relationship, and especially marriages, only a few words can spark a raging firestorm of more words which spews forth statements that after the fact, you’d like to take back, but it’s just too late. We also need to consider HOW the words are spoken.
Words alone account for 7 % of the meaning, while tone and non-verbals bring 38 % and 55 % respectively adding to the effect of only the spoken words. You may be giving away far more about your intent than you realize, just from your non-verbals than the words themselves! Remember, “A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger.” Proverbs 15:1.
Statements to avoid:
Both of these set up a combative environment which pigeon-holes one spouse to those actions not encouraging honest communication or forgiveness. Drives home a feeling of hopelessness!
Here is a threat and a signal that your marriage is conditional, rather than how God intended it to be. Divorce is a solution that could make your life more complicated! Seek wise counsel and don’t use threats, but understanding!
Marriage is work for everyone, it is not a “happy ever after.” Marriage is a commitment and a covenant and as you work through the struggles, able to grow closer to each other by the accomplishment.
If you find yourself finding blame and fault with your spouse, you are showing disrespect – it’s time for honest communication between the two of you, or to seek help and mediation to what is really the underlying trouble and get the issue(s) resolved.
Similar to number 3 above, this one adds shame-which may plant the seed she or he can never please the family, begin to change your words which helps move your thoughts to that of being more pleasant and positive.
“Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.” Proverbs 16:24.
Statements to use:
Eternal, sacrificial love is not a feeling-it’s a decision! It requires sacrifice, that’s what loving forever is all about.
When one spouse begin saying comments like, “you’d be better off without me” these are cries for help and for security where insecurity and emotional stress has begun a foothold in the relationship. Flattery will be only skin deep, but commitment confirms the cement between the two. Once the relationship has a sense of security, then you can to peel back the issues of insecurities.
Using your words to state admiration for your spouse in reference to character traits that are reproducible and can be repeated helps build a strong bond in the relationship. Praise for those traits creates an atmosphere of respect and grace.
Often times the other isn’t looking for an answer or solution, but just for the spouse to come alongside and help or assist. This offer can help eliminate disappointments or confusion and you can problem solve together. The offer affirms your love and commitment that nothing will drive you away, but closer.
Going through the complete forgiveness process has the power to put an end to any offense which began to divide and conquer. Learn your part of every disagreement and be willing to be the first to apologize.
“Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” Colossians 4:6